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No Bias Here

Gallup’s newest daily national poll of likely voters’ presidential preferences show 50 percent for Romney, 46 percent for Obama.

The numbers represent Romney’s highest support, and Obama’s lowest support, in recent days (or recent months, and probably ever, though it’s hard to tell given that Gallup recently changed from a registered voter model to a likely voter model.)

Given prior results of this survey, including before the model change during which time Romney was never better than even with Obama, and that only once, today’s results strike me as dramatic and significant.

Nevertheless, when Gallup’s alert e-mail arrived in my account, the text of the note begins: “The race for president is about tied among likely voters.” Apparently, the e-mail writer at Gallup is having his or her hopes for Obama’s re-election dashed and can’t bear to type the words.

Such not-very-subtle bias should be spurned by Gallup if they want to maintain a reputation of non-partisanship. (Personally, I have seen too much of this from Gallup to believe that they have no bias, but others whom I respect think Gallup is basically fair. And I certainly don’t think they try to influence the actual outcome of the polls with bias; it’s more about how they report the results.)

Ross Kaminsky
Ross Kaminsky
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